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October 20, 2018

Wild Heart in Motion with Desirée Dawson


Written by Maira Ramirez

This September at ArtStarts at River Market series we welcomed a very special guest: Desirée Dawson, winner of CBC’s 2016 Searchlight contest!

Desirée and her baritone ukulele instantly warmed up a very rainy day at the market and inspired us to sing, dance, and explore our creativity. Desirée’s music-based workshop filled with exploration and creativity invited the audience immediately to participate by sharing their name and create a signature dance move. With beautiful, folk-inspired music, Desirée taught us sing-alongs to connect us with nature and animals, inviting us to imagine ourselves as these plants and creatures, dancing and moving our bodies like them. Both the morning and afternoon performance were full of opportunities for children and their families to explore their rhythms and singing skills, as well as to move creatively in response to the musicespecially with Desirée’s freeze-dance activity!

Desirée incorporates elements of songwriting into the learning experience, inviting the children and families to think of rhyming words and patterns by using colours and words to prompt them. Children were able to interact with and play additional instruments that Desirée brought. Things really got moving as she sped up and slowed down the pace of the music, allowing for a range of small and large body movements. Despite the cold and wet weather, Desirée’s contagious enthusiasm and incredible voice inspired and engaged the crowd to get in touch with their “Wild Hearts” through singing and movement.

Desirée’s journey with music has led her to a place she calls her “Wild Heart” space, where she is fully tapped into the flow of her creative spirit. She finds herself at her most wild-at-heart while making genuine connections with those around her and spending time on the traditional, ancestral and unceded Coast Salish territory where she lives and plays. She believes that when our Wild Hearts are in motion, so much is possible!



Free Weekend Family Programs

  • ArtStarts on Saturdays/Rivermarket  -  tune in next month to see Robin And The Timeless Forest with Runaway Moon Theatre on October 27 & 28.
  • ArtStart Explores happens almost every Saturday at 11am and we’d love to see your family there!

ArtStarts Gallery

Think you can’t dance? ArtStarts knows you can! Come down and try out your DJ skills or play in our pop-up dance studio; if you’ve ever been told to slow down, stop moving, or keep up with the group in an art gallery, this exhibition is for you!

ArtStarts in Schools is seeking a world where art is considered an essential part of educating our young people. Visit here for our full calendar of events

Did you know?

Nearly 70% of young people graduating high school in BC feel unprepared for what comes next.  Young people in schools are increasing losing opportunities to explore creativity and engage their imagination - essential ingredients for developing innovate, empathetic and critical thinkers.

We believe that art is essential. When young people engage in the arts, they are able to express   their creative capacities and imagination like never before. Nurturing creativity in all forms, helps everyone to reach their full potential, which goes beyond the school years.

Thank you to our incredible supporters, Westminster Savings and the City of Vancouver, who share our vision and help to make this program possible.

We need more champions! For as little as $10/month you can help keep the family programs FREE for everybody. If you too believe that access to art experience should continue to be free, would you consider chipping in $10 a month?

Your gift to ensure access for art experience will be put to use immediately towards the costs of running these arts programs every weekend.  


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